Physical Therapy Assistant

Topics: American Physical Therapy Association, Physical therapy, Therapy Pages: 2 (530 words) Published: July 8, 2013
Cody Flowers

Requirements to become a Certified Physical Therapist Assistant

Under the observation of a Physical Therapist, a Physical Therapist Assistant (PTA) works to help patients recover from injuries or disabilities within the body. A few exemplifications of their line of work include balance training, exercise, electrical stimulation, massage, ultrasound therapy, and mechanical traction. However, seeing as they are still just assistants, PTA’s must very thoroughly document and report everything they do and turn in their paper work to their overseeing therapist. Although the position is one of a mere apprentice, they are not required to hold a license, but there are several other qualifications needed.

Education is the first step to certification. A basic two-year Associates degree is needed. This can be obtained through Murray State College in Tishomingo, Oklahoma. There are two different components that fit into the degree: classroom studies and clinicals. Under the education part of the degree, you would take several courses during your two year term, including rehabilitation, psychology, physiology, kinesiology, and terminology, and anatomy. Other courses include orthopedics, advanced physical therapy procedures, and pathology. Overall, sixty hours of educational course credits are needed. In the second section of studies, you are required to have working experience in the field. These clinicals occur within the second year of your education. Whether it is in a treatment center of some sort or a professional Physical Therapy business matters not, only that you have the experience needed, and in most cases, 2,000 working hours. Seeing as this would put you directly in contact with other people in a medical field, you would be trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the basics of first aid.

On a side note, since you are in the occupation of physical therapy assistance, you yourself as the therapy...
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